Reg Buttress, who was thought to be one of Britain's oldest shop workers, has died at the age of 94. The grandfather of two passed away two months after retiring, having recently celebrated his birthday.

He began working at the Sainsbury's supermarket in Cwmbran, Torfaen at the age of 59 back in 1981 after being made redundant.

Formerly a coal miner and steam engine driver, Reg had previously retired at the age of 65, but asked to go back to work because - get this - he was bored.

"I felt lost without a job and I had to go back," he told the BBC back in August. "It's a marvellous shop. And I love meeting all the different people."

At the supermarket, Reg had held a number of jobs which varied from collecting trolleys and stacking shelves to individually pricing items and greeting customers.

Credit: Sainsbury's

A Sainsbury's spokesman said: "Reg was a much-loved colleague and an inspiration to all of us. Our thoughts are with his friends and family at this sad time. He will be missed."

Reg began his working life at the age of 13 at Hafodyrynys colliery in Caerphilly county. After getting laid off, he went to an unemployment office which told him there were no local jobs, but he ended up taking a factory role in Birmingham where he earned 14 shillings a week.

Mr Buttress, who was married for 65 years until his wife, Gwendoline, passed away two years ago, told the BBC he remembered his father buying him a bike, which he used to cycle from his home in Pontypool to Birmingham.

"It took me two days and I stopped to sleep in a hedge," he said.

When his accommodation in London was bombed, he returned to south Wales and found work as a steam engine driver. He later worked at a Nylon factory before joining Sainsbury's.

His grandson, David Buttress - who is the founder of delivery website JustEat - paid his respects on Twitter:

What a sad story. Our best wishes are with all of Reg's family and friends.

Featured Image Credit: Sainsbury's

Chris Ogden

Chris Ogden is a journalist at LADbible. He graduated from the University of East Anglia with degrees in English Literature and Creative Writing before completing his NCTJ Diploma in Multimedia Journalism. Chris has previously written for the independent culture magazine The Skinny, among other publications.

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